The history of Sri Lanka could go back to 125,000 years or even 500,000 years old. Indian epic Ramayan addresses Sri Lanka as the wealthy land ruled by Ravana. It is believed that the Vedda people were the first ones who inhibited the land of Sri Lanka, then came the Sinhalese who were led by Prince Vijay. Soon Buddhism became a part of the Sinhalese and the first capital Anuradhapura was built in Sri Lanka. By the 2nd and the 3rd century, Sri Lanka started trading from India, China, Persia and also Ethiopia.
In 993, the Chola dynasty invaded Sri Lanka and by 1017 they captured a major part of Sri Lanka. However, the Sinhalese leader Prince Vijay fought back and took their land back. Unfortunately, after the death of Prince Vijay, the country was broken into various parts. Many rulers ruled this land later. The Tamils from India entered Sri Lanka and started their living in the north of Sri Lanka.
In the year 1517, the Portuguese entered Colombo and initiated their rule over many coastal areas. They also build a fort in Colombo. The Portuguese ended up in disputes with many rulers of Sri Lanka and thus many kingdoms succumbed to the malpractices of the Portuguese. One very prominent kingdom which lost its fight against the Portuguese was the Jaffna kingdom. Then in 1636, Rajasinha the king of Kandy resorted to the Dutch after they entered the land of Sri Lanka. The Dutch East India Company agreed to help the Sri Lankan king to get rid of the Portuguese. The Dutch did not keep their words of giving the land taken from the Portuguese to the Sri Lankan rulers against their expenses. Thus, in a short while the Dutch started ruling a major chunk of land in Sri Lanka and the Portuguese rule came to an end.
In 1796, the British entered Sri Lanka and soon annexed Colombo and Jaffna. This led to the end of the Dutch rule. Soon, the British took over the only independent land remaining in Sri Lanka i.e. Kandy. The British brought many reforms to this land. Soon, the feeling of nationalism grew among the Sri Lankan and thus they formed the Ceylon National Congress in the year 1919. In the year 1931, the Sri Lankans made the first constitution and then later demanded for complete independence. They made another constitution in 1946. In the year 1947, the British announced their withdrawal of its rule from India and thus, the Sri Lankan also demanded for the same. The British withdrew and thus Sri Lanka got its independence on 4th February 1948.